Winter Safety Tips for Your Dog

It's co-co-co-cold out there! The sun is setting sooner, the air is frigid, and your dog is at risk the longer they are outside. During this time of the year, there are certain preventive measures to take for your dog's safety. Always know your dog's limits in the cold weather and protect them from possible dangers. 

Cold Safety for Dogs

Your dog’s paws and skin are very fragile and need to be taken care of in the cold winter months. There are a few different ways to protect your dogs body this season: 

Clean Paws

People use many different kinds of deicers in the winter. If you take your dog for a walk around the neighborhood, they may pick up chemicals in their paws from salt. Always use warm water and cleanse their paws as soon as they come inside. This will stop them from accidentally licking off any salt that may be on their paws. Be sure to get in between their toes and around the pads of their feet! 

Winter Boots

Dogs can actually get frostbite if left outside too long or exposed to temperatures too low. This is why doggy boots are recommended in the wintertime. If your dog is just going outside for a minute or two, it may not be necessary to put boots on them. However, when taking your dog on a walk or playing outside, boots are a wonderful safety tip for their paws. Most boots are waterproof which will prevent their paws from getting cold due to the wet snow. 

Jackets

Dogs have fur and people tend to think that is enough to keep them warm in the winter. The truth is, it’s the equivalent of a light spring jacket. Dressing your dog in a warm winter jacket will get their body warm and block the wind from their skin. All dogs should wear a jacket when going out into winter weather, especially dogs with short hair. They’ll stay warm and look fashionable while doing it! 

Winter Toxins 

To keep people safe in the winter, we take certain actions that are harmless to humans but toxic to animals. Keeping animals safe in the winter should also be a priority and they should always be thought off when using specific products. 

AntiFreeze

While antifreeze protects our cars in the wintertime, it can be deadly to dogs. When storing antifreeze in your home, it should be kept up in a high place that your dog cannot reach. Also, always check for antifreeze leaks. A teaspoon amount of antifreeze can send your dog's kidneys into failure. If your dog does ingest any amount of antifreeze, take them to the vet immediately. Symptoms of antifreeze could include: 

  • Drooling
  • Vomiting 
  • Seizures 
  • Drunk-like appearance

Snow & Ice Salt  

The sodium chloride or calcium chloride found inside snow salt is very toxic to dogs. It causes irritation on their paws if not cleaned right away. If your dog licks his paws after coming inside, the salt ingested can lead to death. Make sure the deicer you are using is pet safe, and always clean off your dog's paws after coming in. Also, try to stop your dog from eating snow and drinking puddles.